UAAP Season 82: Rebuilding FEU, UE open women’s volleyball tourney
Mark Escarlote on Mar 03, 2020 05:32 AM
(Photo: Arvin Lim)
Rebuilding squads Far Eastern University and University of the East cross paths on Tuesday to open the UAAP Season 82 women’s volleyball tournament at the Mall of Asia Arena.
The match is slated at 3:30 p.m. and will air live on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166, LIGA SkyCable Channel 86, LIGA HD SkyCable Channel 183, iWant and via livestream.
Both teams lost their key players from last year and will be parading younger crew.
FEU, which bid farewell last season to reliable seniors Heather Guino-o, Jerrili Malabanan and Kyle Negrito and parted ways with France Ronquillo, Carlota Hernandez and Celine Domingo during the offseason, will bank on holdovers Gel Cayuna, Jeanette Villareal, Czarina Carandang, Buding Duremdes, Ivana Agudo and a fully recovered Lycha Ebon, who had her debut season cut short after suffering a knee injury. Expectations are high also on newcomer Shiela Kiseo.
The Lady Tams came a win short of a return stint in the Finals last year after bowing down to eventual champion Ateneo de Manila University. But with just a handful of veterans coming back, FEU wants to temper its expectations and just work on the task at hand one game at a time.
“One step at a time. Sabi nga ni coach, before pumunta ng Finals, focus muna namin ang Final Four. Pero before kami mag-Final Four, syempre may mga tatalunin pa kaming teams,” said Ebon.
Just lilke the Lady Tams, the Lady Warriors are also moving on from the departure of veterans Judith Abil, last year’s Best Setter Lai Bendong, Season 81 Best Libero Kath Arado and Sel Baliton.
UE hopes to improve from its last year’s 3-11 finish but the Lady Warriors’ campaign this year will depend on the leadership of seniors Mean Mendez and Seth Rodriguez.
“Kami [seniors] nga 'yung unang magpapakita, kami 'yung unang maga-all out, kami 'yung magdadala ng team. Tutulong sa coaches na madala 'yung team,” said Rodriguez. “Tapos 'yun nga, all-out kami kasi ayaw namin mangyari 'yung sa last season na puro pagsisisi.”
Sophomore libero Jasckin Babol and rookie setter Jel Quizon will get an acid test in their debuts as replacements for Arado and Bendong, respectively.
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